Manual turning of eggs

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by she-earl, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. she-earl

    she-earl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 17, 2009
    Lancaster County PA
    It is my understanding that when you are turning eggs during incubation that the number of times they are turned during the day should be an odd number. Is this correct? Is it better to turn the eggs a lower number of times (ex. 3) or more times (ex. 5)? I am getting ready to put some lavendar orpingtons, buff orpingtons and red sex-link (BO roo over BR hens) in my in still-air incubator. I am also contemplating when they go into lock-down to put the eggs in a carton for hatching. Any comments on that idea? Thanks.
  2. Lovable Chicks

    Lovable Chicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 23, 2010
    I turned mine 3 times a day...tried every 8 hours. I just went into lockdown and just layed them in there.

    ETA... I candled just before lockdown and all seem good and could see movement.
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2011
  3. weimarmama

    weimarmama Overrun With Chickens

    Jun 4, 2010
    My Coop
    I hand turn duck eggs & have much better hatch rates doing it that way than in an auto turner. Right now, I have a few Polish & Silkie eggs in the bator & they're my first time doing chicken eggs by hand. I do it 3 times a day, in the morning after chores, in the afternoon, & at night. Five turns is better, but as long they're turned an odd number & don't spend too much time on one side that's what matters.

    I'm forgetful, so one thing that has helped me is keeping a small dry erase board beside the incubator. Each time I turn the eggs, I write down the time & which side I turned them to (X or O). Then, at the end of the week I erase all of it & start over.
  4. groundpecker

    groundpecker Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 26, 2011
    Rison, Arkansas
    I now have an auto turner. When i did hand turn my eggs i turned them 3x a day 180 degrees. You can put a small pencil or pen X and 0 on opposite sides of the eggs to help hand turning.
  5. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    I would turn them around 7 am, 3pm and 11pm. Also I would put an X on one side of the egg and an O on the other side of the egg and always turn the eggs in the same direction so that at 7am all of the X's are up, at 3pm the O's are up and 11pm the X's are up. Then the opposite the next day. Just my opinion.
  6. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 4, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    The point of doing it an odd number of times is so that each night, which is probably the longest time they will sit in one position, they are on a different side. One night the X will be up, the next night it will be the O that's up. If you turned them an even number of times, they'd spend every night with the same side up. Having them spend alternative nights with different sides up just allows the embryo better access to nutrients inside the egg. And turning them at the same time every day isn't so much for the health of the embryo, as an hour or two each way won't matter. it's just to get you into a set routine so you're less likely to forget to do it!
  7. Time-Out

    Time-Out Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 29, 2011
    The Peak District, UK
    I turned mine five times a day. When I had to go into the office (only for one week) I got up to turn them at 4am, then at 8:30am, just before leaving, then I'd pop back over lunch and turn them at 1pm, then at 5:30 when I got back and again at 10pm before bed. I was shattered, but it worked!

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